Ticks & Mosquitoes

Tick & Mosquito Control in Saco, Portland, Wells & Cape Elizabeth, ME

Ticks are parasites and need a host for survival. In doing so they transfer bacteria and viruses from one host to the next. As disease vectors, the two below are common in Maine and responsible for Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever and Lyme Disease. Mosquitoes are vectors for several harmful diseases such as Malaria, Zika, and Dengue. They are the most dangerous organism on earth and responsible for around 1 million deaths per year!

American Dog Tick

Named after: Their preference is to feed off the domestic dog.

Identification: ΒΌ," dark-reddish brown

Seasonality: Spring, and especially summer

Why they are in/near my home: They are found in wooded areas, usually on the border of a yard, pathway, or trail where they wait for a host. They are most common in rural areas.

Tips for homeowners: Whenever traveling in high grass or the woods wear pants tucked into socks, a long sleeved shirt, and hat. Light colors are best so that ticks can be easily detected. Always carefully inspect yourself and wash clothes shortly after leaving the area.

How Green Shield can help: Ticks are difficult to control, so the skills of a trained professional like Green Shield are recommended. In the case of ticks, we use a comprehensive tick control program which focuses on where your lawn meets the woods. Recommendations may be given to open certain areas to sunlight or trim back bushes that are near walking paths. Chemical application is important in avoiding health concerns such as Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Applications are always applied responsibly with safety being our top priority.

Weird fact: They live longer than many insects. It takes them two years to grow from egg to adult.

Black-legged (deer) Tick

Named after: Their black legs contrast with their pale body. Their slang term is derived from frequently feeding on white-tailed deer in the winter.

Identification: 1/8," flat broad oval shape, dark brown to black in color

Seasonality: Spring, summer, and fall.

Why they are in/near my home: Like the American Dog tick, they hide on shrubs and tall grass waiting for a host to latch onto. They live in wooded areas and fields in rural areas and are rarely found inside unless found on a pet.

Tips for homeowners: Whenever traveling in high grass or the woods wear pants tucked into socks, a long sleeved shirt, and hat. Light colors are best so that ticks can be easily detected. Always carefully inspect yourself and wash clothes shortly after leaving the area.

How Green Shield can help: Because deer ticks are the principle vectors for lyme disease, Green Shield takes treatment very seriously. Control can be difficult, but after a full inspection, a unique program will be designed pertaining to your specific property. Often this involves applying products to areas where the lawn meets the woods, especially in shady areas where deer ticks prefer. If a serious problem is present, customers will be given specific recommendations to check themselves frequently, since most people bitten do not notice the painless bite until lyme disease symptoms occur.

Weird fact: They live longer than many insects. It takes them two years to grow from egg to adult.

Mosquito

Named after: Native Americans would call them "zancudos," with the word "mosquito" being Spanish for "little fly." In North America, the use of the word mosquito to describe nature's most dangerous organism dates all the way back to 1583. However, they have been around since the Tiassic Period when dinosaurs roamed the earth.

Identification: .1"-.4," slender bodies with three segments: a head, a thorax, and an abdomen. They are weak fliers and slow at 1mph-1.5mph.

Seasonality: It starts slowly in spring around April, peaks in the summer months of June-August and tapers off into fall. Green Shield typically treats monthly from April-September for best results. Beware especially at dawn and dusk.

Why they are in/near my home: Most seek shade in densely wooded areas that hold moisture. With Maine's wetlands and plentiful woods, it is a prime home for mosquitoes. They are particularly attracted to warm bodies.

Tips for homeowners: Make sure your yard has less items that hold water like children's toys and old tires, or be prepared to empty these items each time it rains. Tie tarps tightly over grills and firewood so they do not collect water. Also fix holes in screens, clean out gutters, and most importantly, keep your lawn mowed. Also, use insect repellents containing DEET!

How Green Shield can help: One of our licensed technicians would inspect your property and use a mosquito fogging machine to apply a family-friendly product to your tree line or property line. This is applied 10 ft high to target nesting sites in trees and also targets landscaping, thick foliage, and dense shrubs. Much of the yard is usually covered as well. You can expect a 90% decrease at first with a gradual drop in effectiveness over the next 30 days. Green Shield typically treats monthly for this reason.

Weird fact: They are rarely full and can drink three times their body weight in human blood.